FLINT, MI – Flint Police are seeking criminal charges against a city council candidate after a complaint said she allegedly misreported her residency in seeking the Sixth Ward Council seat.
Flint Police Chief Tim Johnson said his department submitted a warrant request against Sixth Ward council candidate Chia Morgan after former Flint City Council primary candidate Deltonya Burns filed a complaint with his department.
“This does not mean she is guilty of any crime,” Johnson said. “This just means that someone filed a complaint and we had to follow through. We are doing our job.”
Burns filed a complaint on Monday, September 25, 2017, with the Flint Police Department alleging that Morgan falsely reported her address on documents filed with the Flint City Clerk Inez Brown’s office when filing to run for the Sixth Ward council seat earlier this year.
According to evidence submitted by Burns’ attorney, Trachelle Young, Morgan signed an affidavit of identity in March saying she resided at an address at 2542 Paducah in the Sixth Ward but documents say Morgan had received a deposit refund for the property in February for both the lease and water deposit with the City of Flint.
Young said she sent Morgan a letter on Sept. 6, 2017, giving the Sixth Ward candidate an opportunity to respond to Burns’ complaint but said Morgan’s attorney said she did nothing wrong and she will remain on the ballot for the council seat.
“Records show that she did intend on moving in at one point but she never did it,” Young said. “We can show where she used that address before she ever entered the lease and after she terminated the lease as a circulator and in the affidavit.”
Morgan was a registered voter at the Paducah address from January through May according to city records. Her address was updated in May to a home on Monteith, which is also in the Sixth Ward.
“If anyone knows Chia, then they would know she’s a good person,” said Loyst Fletcher the attorney representing Morgan. “She hasn’t done anything fraudulently. She definitely hasn’t done anything blatantly fraudulently… Anybody can make a complaint if they have $270 and an ink pen. I’m not concerned about those allegations. She did absolutely nothing wrong.”
Young said Burns, who was the third highest vote-getter in the Sixth Ward, wants Morgan’s name removed from the ballot and she is seeking to have election ballots for the Sixth Ward reprinted with her name in place of Morgan’s.
Genesee County Clerk John Gleason said ballots could be reprinted in time for the Nov. 7 elections.
“Whatever that judge tells us to do we’re going to do,” Gleason said. “It would take about three days to reprint the ballots.”
Genesee County Circuit Judge Archie L. Hayman ordered an investigation into Morgan’s address during an October 2, 2017, hearing to be conducted by Brown’s office. Another hearing is set for Wednesday, October 11, 2017, in Hayman’s courtroom.